Does the bounce back argument that a flat 2016 will be replaced by a strong 2017 in UK M&A stand up to scrutiny? Well lets see;
- the devaluation in sterling does mean UK assets are more attractive - tick
- the more a corporate asset has overseas earnings to hedge the better- tick
- a trump administration being protectionist means investors may turn to the UK-possibly but actually buying in the US to get access to the US domestic market seems a stronger argument
- companies have cash - true but have boards the appetite to buy in a brexit uncertainty
There is definitely life in Asia with Japanese investors finally spending, however we are definitely not seeing the mega leveraged deals which often point to an increase in activity.
The truth is there will be deals to be done as in every year but nothing points to 2017 being any stronger than 2016. If anything the brexit uncertainty and Eurozone nervousness means boards will need to be convinced of a long term strategic fit before taking the risk. If the big buyout funds become active that might support a spurt but it is a big 'IF'.
After subdued 2016, contrained by Brexit and Trump, these bankers are predicting a 2017 bounceback for UK M&A